How my Bullet Journal Helps Me Prep my Linens for the Next Season

Like most people, I prefer to run household as simply as possible. For example, most of my linens are white. They all match — from the kitchen towels to our pillowcases. So, they can be washed together.

The changing season is a sensible time to touch them up and swap out the lighter linens for warm ones. I use my bullet journal to outline all these cleaning tasks — including running to the laundromat for my large duvet inserts.

Prepping My Linens for the Next Season

Since most of my linens are white, I don’t have a complex system to prepare them. I can use a little bleach, stain spray, or even baking soda with vinegar to brighten them up.

Refresh Everyday Items

The changing seasons offer a reminder to refresh everyday linens. First, I set aside a bin in my laundry area to corral stained or faded linens. These usually include:

  • Cloth Napkins
  • Tablecloths
  • Towels
  • Sheets
  • Pillowcases (Bed and Sofa)

Then, I separate them into three piles. The first pile includes items that are too soiled to keep. They may become rags or I may simply toss them. The second are linens that I need to treat and rewash. The third are items that I want to set aside for professional cleaning.

I log these as tasks in my bullet journal to remind me.

Restore Cold Weather Blankets and Duvets

Even though I wash everything before I pack it, I find my cold weather linens smell like an attic when I take them out in the fall. Soft, plush items like blankets and duvets are especially prone to those musty odors.

I pull them out and run them through a light wash again. Most of my items can fit in my washer and dryer. However, my thickest blankets and duvet inserts don’t wash and dry well in my compact unit. (A slight drawback of small-space living).

Image: The Clothes Spin

Instead of fighting the machine, I set aside some time to bring them The Clothes Spin. Most of the time, they have larger drums and stronger machines.

I simply fill a basket with these thicker linens and mark a time on my calendar to run a load. As long as I have a good audiobook, this extra task is worth the refresh.

Clean and Pack Warm Weather Linens

Finally, I wash and pack my warm weather linens. I start the process by putting my empty boxes beside my washing machine. Then, I trade out my light linens for thicker ones. As I strip dirty sheets and change pillowcases, I toss them in the wash. Once they dry, I fold them right into the storage container. Then, I can move it back into long-term storage when the box is full. If you’re looking for a quality and well established business, be sure to check out this Gretna VA laundromat

Plan Ahead with Your Bullet Journal

I use my bullet journal to help me remember those easy-to-forget “adulting” tasks.

Quarterly

When it comes to big seasonal changes (usually 4 times a year), I also create a list of tasks for the quarter. They’re those annoying reminders for home maintenance, doctor’s appointments, and other tasks I’m likely to forget.

Bullet Journal Fall Bucket List

Most of the time, I find myself referencing last year’s journal to create this list of linens to refresh. This takes the form of a double-spread. I divide it into several columns by topic.

Monthly

Typically, I plan out my bullet journal pages one month in advance. This starts with a “cover” page for the month that lists my goals and large tasks. I enjoy my monthly spreads and decorate them with the name of the month and some inspirational sayings.

Sometimes, I squish the goals next to my first week. For this list of seasonal washing, I find I need reminders on both a monthly and weekly basis — to get them all done.

Weekly

Then, I fill out each week into a double-page spread. That spread usually includes a small list of projects that I want to complete that week. It also includes a focus for the week — sometimes a quote or image to inspire me.

I vary the layout from week to week. Lately, I’ve been placing all of my days on one page and the task list on the facing page.

Daily

Under each day, I write my schedule including any appointments and deadlines. Underneath the schedule, I mark out the tasks I’ll do each day. This references my overall project list.

It helps me actually work those ongoing projects into each day. Otherwise, distractions like scrolling social media or watching Netflix fill up my time before I remember key cleaning tasks.

Planning for the Next Season

Finally, I mark a reminder (often on a post-it note) that I will need to add in these changes for the next season. If it’s on a loose page or post-it, I can keep moving it out until the appropriate page.

Then, I can start the process again when the weather gets warm.

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The Self-Possession of Keeping a Journal

Whenever I need a burst of creativity, I read either a memoir or a fictional story written in the first person. It pushes me out of my own mental boundaries and makes me consider another person’s point of view. My mind takes on that new role and flexes into new thoughts.

One of my favorite stories to revisit is The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman (Read it here). The main character’s reflection on her own state of mind mirrors the process I go through daily when I jot in my own journal. Although I am not in a state of mental anguish, keeping a journal helps me gain confidence and regulate my emotions. It helps me see myself and think about how I want to exist in this world.

A notable example of early feminist literature, the story builds symbolism around the sick room of the unnamed narrator. A modern reader will feel conflicted about her situation as she is held against her will to recover from her recent pregnancy.

It’s not a thriller. And it doesn’t need to be.

There is no real twist. Just a horrifying journey of an unwell mind (or perhaps a mind that has been made unwell.)

If a physician of high standing, and one’s own husband, assures friends and relatives that there is really nothing the matter with one but temporary nervous depression—a slight hysterical tendency—what is one to do?

My brother is also a physician, and also of high standing, and he says the same thing.

So I take phosphates or phosphites—whichever it is, and tonics, and journeys, and air, and exercise, and am absolutely forbidden to “work” until I am well again.

Personally, I disagree with their ideas.

Personally, I believe that congenial work, with excitement and change, would do me good.

But what is one to do?

EXCERPT FROM THE YELLOW WALLPAPER

The author’s sentiments foreshadow the soon-after cultural critique of domestic life as both bland and suffocating. In both fiction and non-fiction, her contemporaries and followers began to question the meaninglessness of mid-century household arrangements. Most of them did this through an exploration of their thoughts and feelings.

want

Most explored their identities through a series of journal entries (or fictional recreations of journals) that showed a progression of self. This fascination with self loosely ties together these stories for me. I always lump these types together in my mind — although they may fit in different categories.

They’re not really coming-of-age stories — more like finding-myself stories.

Going through these journeys with the writer opens doors in my own mind — to consider who I have become and could become.

That’s why I keep coming back to my own journal. It’s not a record of anything other than a progression of self — as obscure and unread as my story may be.

A Pattern Passion Project

This thing started when I decided that I wouldn’t set any goals for 2019.

Not for my business.

Not for my art.

Not for my education.

Not for my personal development.

I decided that I just wanted to select a project that I found inspiring. I wanted to do something positive that could keep me focused on beauty throughout the year.

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How my journal helped me bounce back from baby

I was a mess when I came home from the hospital with my son. Although I had a healthy pregnancy, stayed busy, and felt really empowered, I had a difficult, scary birth. I actually had preeclampsia that remained undiagnosed until two weeks after my due date. My blood pressure looked healthy because I have low blood pressure normally.

By delivery, my kidneys, liver and heart were quite strained.

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